Police Often Charge Teens With Drug Possession Rather Than DUI

Say you're a teenager who's out driving on a Virginia country road, and you decide to take advantage of the peace and serenity by lighting up a joint. Just your luck, a police officer is parked at a nearby intersection and notices you driving erratically. He motions you to pull over and open your window; you've long since snuffed out the joint, but you can't do anything about the odor of marijuana that wafts out of your car.

What do you think the officer will do? Well, if he's like most state police officers, he'll look for evidence of drug paraphernalia (or actual drugs) either in your car or on your person, and charge you with possession of drugs if he finds any evidence. The fact is that a simple marijuana possession charge in Virginia is more of a “slam-dunk” in the eyes of the authorities than a charge of DUI (driving under the influence) is, especially since there's no commonly accepted blood test that detects marijuana usage, which can make a DUID charge in Virginia harder to stick.

If, however, you've covered your tracks and the officer can find no evidence of drugs or drug paraphernalia, he may have to settle for a DUI citation. If the evidence of your marijuana use is sufficiently obvious (e.g., half-lidded eyes, difficulty concentrating), you may have a tough time in court—which is why it's important to hire a Virginia DUI lawyer from the firm of Jarrell, Hicks & Waldman. Call us at 888-783-9701 for a free consultation.

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